THE HEZITORIAL: Yonkers City Councilman Christopher Johnson a Bully Totally Out of Control By HEZI ARIS
YONKERS, NY -- November 17, 2012 -- Allegations of abuse in the workplace were lodged against Yonkers City Councilman Christopher Johnson (D-1st District) as reported in the Yonkers Tribune on September 6, 2012; reference THE HEZITORIAL: NYS Assembly Speaker Silver Must Be Dismissed By HEZI ARIS.
The complaint was filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) by former Yonkers City Council Aide Nicole Benjamin against her employer who berated and demeaned her before her colleagues. Ms Benjamin had in September contended she was "forced to work under hostile conditions and bullied” by Councilman Johnson.
Yonkers Tribune /The Westchester Guardian have since that time learned of an incident with a male friend that degenerated into a verbal contest where the maniacal rants of the insecure Councilman Johnson was revealed.
The latest contemptible outbreak by Councilman Johnson took place on Wednesday evening, November 14, 2012, at the Hudson River Community Association (HRCA) meeting at which developer Ron Shemesh gave a presentation of his basic concepts for the adaptive re-use concepts he envisions for the Glenwood Power Station and the adjacent Trevor Park grounds.
Councilman Johnson had former Aide Nicole Benjamin’s successor, Aide Keisha Skipper represent him at the Public Hearing conducted in the august Yonkers City Council Chambers at the Planning Board Meeting at which many HRCA members, a formidable neighborhood association, spoke to the development project divulged publicly by Mr Shemesh’s representatives at the Planning Board Meeting. Keisha Skipper dutifully attended to taking notes and diligently and efficiently completed her task. Yonkers City Democratic Party Chair Symra Brandon was also at the Yonkers Planning Board Meeting. She was overheard making a telephone call to Mr Johnson to advise him to get to that meeting as over 100 people were in attendance. His response to Ms Brandon was not heard.
When many HRCA members departed the Yonkers City Council Chambers to attend Mr Shemesh’s presentation at the Nepperhan Community Center (NCC), including this reporter, I noticed Mr Johnson in attendance. So was his aide, Ms Skipper.
Mr Shemesh’s presentation eventually concluded the discourse and interchange; the HRCA meeting was formally concluded. Refreshments and chili and Doritos accompanied the continuing discussions among those attending before they would depart for destinations unknown..
Ten minutes before I was to depart, I saw Mr Johnson turn to look beyond me toward his Aide Keisha Johnson with a look that could “kill”. He had been noticed to have brought his hand to her face in a menacing manner; he berated her in front of some in attendance; and had eventually departed before having degraded himself and before having bullied yet another Aide in public. He lost his cool over her reminding him that he best get a birthday gift for his girlfriend. He didn’t want to be reminded and lashed out against Ms Skipper.
His conduct has been over the top with three people this reporter is familiar. He needs help with anger management issues. His abusive interactions with an all female staff at the Yonkers City Council Chambers is demeaning, frightening, and alien to them and all onlookers who find his conduct unbecoming, unacceptable, and intolerable. His behavior cannot be overlooked or appeased by apologies. He needs help. His conduct is totally out of step on how men may treat women in a professional setting requiring civil conduct. Mr Johnson’s behavior is not acceptable. No one will stand by his side to condone his misbehavior.
What is most appalling is that there are many people who are familiar with Mr Johnson’s issues yet they have not been colleague or friend to him for not putting their foot down on his outrageous conduct.
The culture that has been permitted to thrive because of Mr Johnson's behavior not being stopped by peers who should have admonished him long ago, should it not cease and desist, must be investigated by the Yonkers Inspector General before the City of Yonkers finds itself litigiously entangled over his barbaric and unseemly conduct.